I used to think I was fast. Way back when I was in Cub Scouts we had a Cub Scout Olympics at our local church and I took home many of the first place awards. I came to find out later in the regional Cub Scout Olympics that my local church must have been rigged the local Olympics in my favor. Did I just find a bunch of metals and pick them up? If you had seen how far behind I was in every race in the regional Olympics you might think there was some credibility to that idea.
It wasn’t just the fact that I lost, each race that devastated me, it was the fact that I think I may have been dead last.
A few years later with my confidence back, the cutest girl in my school class asked me to join the Orem Track Club with her.
This wasn’t just a cute girl, it was Jamie Stanworth. She was clearly the most beautiful girl in my entire school… and we were “Going Out.” That term “Going Out” meant in Elementary School that we were an item. But it also meant that I was mostly scared to talk to her.
So for her to invite me into joining up with the Orem track club was like the heavens had opened and light was shining on me. There was no way in the world I would say no. I went home, told my parents I wanted to join the track club and they paid the fees. (My Mom, knowing how slow of a runner I was, must have been thinking I was crazy)
My first practice was very revealing. I had my track shoes on that had the nifty spikes. I could see Jamie’s blond hair being blown in the wind. Life was good.
Jamie came up to me and said we should race. My male mind thought, “I better be easy on her, I don’t want to make her look bad.” We got set, and some other kid (I don’t remember any of the other kids besides Jamie.) said “On your mark, get set, GO!”
From that point on, all I could see was Jamie’s back. I could see her legs moving so fast that they started to blur. In a moment it was over… well at least for her as she crossed the finish line way before I did. Then a few moments later, I crossed the finish line.
I remember the look on her face. I could see “You are so slow” written all over it.
My Manhood stood in the balance. I had just been beaten badly by a girl. Not just any girl, but the cutest girl in the school. I could feel that whatever had possessed her to be my girlfriend up until then was quickly leaving her.
I had to do something, and quick. I said, “I think I’ll try the Shot Put”.